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ACSian Theatre at the New Prague Dance Festival 2013

From the 29th of June to the 5th of July, 21 ACSian Theatre members flew to Prague, the city of a hundred spires, to compete in the 17th New Prague Dance Festival 2013 (NPDF).

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ACSian Theatre presents The Ramayana at NPDF 2013
The NPDF offers the opportunity to amateur dance groups from around the world to compete and learn from professionals during its 5 day duration. Participants came from all corners of the globe- Australia, South Africa, Belgium, UK, USA and more. 
 
The days began with masterclasses at the conservatory, ranging from modern, hip hop and ballet to pantomime, pilates and theatrical makeup. The professors were excellent teachers, imparting both their styles and their philosophies to us through the language of dance. 

In the afternoons we trooped to the theatre for performance rehearsals. ACSian Theatre's piece, performed on three of the four nights of the festival, was entitled 'The Adventures of Rama' and takes its inspiration from the Indian Epic, 'The Ramayana'. A 15min dance performance choreographed by Filomar Tario, it incorporated dance styles from various southeast Asian cultures. We were also able to watch the performances of other groups, and were awed by the talents from countries such as Taiwan and Brazil.
 

It was not all dancing, however. On the second day, we were brought to Kutna Hora, a old mining town outside of Prague to explore the Ossuary (or Bone Church), as well as an old silver mine. Trying traditional Czech food was another highlight of the trip, as was walking around the various farmers’ markets and squares in Prague. 
 
Dance crosses all language boundaries, and over the course of the trip we also formed friendships with the other dancers from around the globe. On two nights we were treated to special group dinners with our fellow competitors, one on board a boat down the Vlatva river, and the other at the Michna Palace on the last night of our stay. 
 
We are proud to have won three international prizes for the school- First in Ethnic/ Folkdance, First in Dance Theatre, and the Festival Participants Prix, a prize awarded to the best ensemble, nominated by the other international participants. We would like to thank our teachers, Mrs Creffield, Ms Wong, Mr Chin, Ms Tea, Ms Diya and Mr Arunan, and the school for giving us this wonderful opportunity, and for giving us the encouragement and guidance to help us finish well.

Prague is a beautiful city of sights, sounds, movement and more. Our answer to whether we had the trip of our lives? Czech. 
 
Marcella Low
2SD3